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Van Jones Says Muslim Keith Ellison Is Future of the Democratic Party

On CNN, liberal activist Anthony Kapel "Van" Jones said that "the Clinton days are over" in the Democratic Party, and pointed to two emerging leaders as the future of a more progressive political party focused on identity politics. Naturally, he chose two racial minority members of Congress — and the extremely controversial first Muslim congressman.

"You have to understand, I think that the Clinton days are over," Jones told CNN's Jake Tapper on CNN's "State of the Union" on Sunday. "This idea that we're going to be this moderate party ... those days are over." Jones called for a new generation of Democrat leadership, touting California Attorney General Kamala Harris (an anti-free speech activist) and Representative Keith Ellison, the first Muslim member of Congress and a candidate for the Democratic National Committee chairmanship.

"I think that Keith Ellison is very important because he is somebody who represents the progressive wing of the party," Jones declared. "On thing that happened, when Hillary Clinton had a chance to make a VP pick, she didn't pick someone from the progressive wing, which made it much harder to heal the wounds with the [Bernie] Sanders and Elizabeth Warren wing. Keith Ellison represents that wing very, very well."

Keith Ellison also represents a long-term threat to the Democratic Party's success as well. Ellison has ties to the Nation of Islam (which he later denounced), has received contributions from members of the radical front group the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), attacked Vice President Dick Cheney's actions as "the very definition of totalitarianism, authoritarianism and dictatorship," and compared the Bush administration's reaction to the September 11 attacks to Hitler's use of the Reichstag fire.

In 2009, Ellison met with Mohammed al-Hanooti, whom FBI documents identify as a top U.S. fundraiser for the terror organization Hamas. They met at a campaign event for Virginia House of Delegates candidate Esam Omeish, who had previously called for Palestinians to follow "the jihad way" against Israel.

Last month, the Anti-Defamation League — no conservative organization — declared Ellison "disqualified" from becoming DNC chairman based on remarks the congressman made about Israel in a 2010 speech. The group argued that Ellison's remarks about Israel suggested anti-Semitism, an unfortunate trend among Muslims worldwide, and one in keeping with Ellison's old praise for Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, whom the congressman himself later denounced as anti-Semitic.